Clients often ask me for advice on a method, concept, or technique to guarantee growth for their revenue-generating site. The truth is, there is no guaranteed tactic to making money online. But after twenty years in the consulting business, and over 200 websites under my belt, I’ve figured out how to come close to guaranteeing growth on the Internet.
The one thing we do when we go into business with a website is to extract two vital pieces of information:
- Who is your closest competitor?
- Can you name some other websites or small businesses in your arena that are bigger than you?
If you can find a site that’s like your site, but twenty times bigger, it will give you a good model to start with. You can then analyze that site’s growth patterns, traffic, and overall construction in order to create your own template.
Think about McDonalds and Burger King. McDonalds came first, and Burger King essentially copied their model to a T. They modeled their locations, menu, and branding after McDonalds. They even went so far as to hire McDonalds employees. Instead of reinventing the wheel, they physically replicated the wheel, so to speak. And they’ve been very successful—arguably less successful than McDonalds, but they’ve been around since 1953 and currently have over 13,000 outlets around the world.
This idea can be translated to the web revenue world. If you can find a website that sells the same thing you’re selling, or planning to sell, you can look at the details of how they do things, right down to the nitty gritty: What sort of navigation buttons do they use? How do they structure their pages? What is their messaging like?
If you already have a website, consider implementing just one idea that your competition has already proven works. Do some analysis, maybe even some split testing, to see how this change effects your traffic and sales.
We call this technique “modeling,” and it’s one of the best ways to get guaranteed growth results for your site. There’s your advice!